A little while ago I made a video entitled, “The Truth About Exercise: Does It Increase or Decrease Testosterone Levels?”
I highly suggest you watch that video if you exercise – whether it’s with weights and/or cardio.
Now, an important question that was asked from that article was:
“I take pre-workout stimulants; how do those products affect my testosterone levels? I’m stronger at the gym because of it, does that mean it’s increasing my testosterone levels? What about adrenaline, is it good or bad?”
So, this is a great question because I know a lot of people take “pre-workout stimulants” or basically, different products that’ll give them more energy, such as “energy drinks”.
Unfortunately, almost all of these products are just loaded with caffeine. Sure, they’ll have some vitamins and amino acids, but it’s all about the caffeine. That’s the primary ingredient that’s doing it all, that’s causing the “stimulation” of your adrenal glands to produce more adrenaline and epinephrine.
Speaking of epinephrine, in the old days we used to take ephedrine, which is basically an amphetamine.
How Stimulants Work
So, when taking such stimulants (pre-workout pills and energy drinks), your body produces more adrenaline/epinephrine, which triggers your body’s “fight or flight” response. This causes your air passages to dilate and open up more, which provides your muscles with more “energy” and oxygen.
Obviously, this is great for exercise.
At the same time, adrenaline causes your blood vessels to get smaller and contract, to redirect more blood towards your muscles – including your heart and lungs. This is one reason your heart rate speeds up and your blood pressure goes up with stimulants.
The end result is you’ll feel less pain – so you can push longer and harder, which is perfect when you’re exercising or if you’re trying to run for your life.
You’ll also become stronger and have heightened awareness. Again, all great for exercise.
Unfortunately, your body’s “fight or flight” response is NOT to be triggered daily. This is massive stress on the body. This causes a huge increase in stress hormones, such as cortisol.
Now, keep in mind that exercise, in itself, will cause an increase in adrenaline and cortisol. These stimulant products are now ADDING to this stress. This is EXTRA stress. So now, that’s double the stress on your body and endocrine system (hormones).
This is a bad thing.
However, that’s just the beginning of the negativity.
These days, most people already have adrenal fatigue due to an overproduction of adrenaline.
Our lives are very complicated now, compared to 100+ years ago.
We are getting bombarded with “stuff” all day long and being pulled in different directions, all the time, which is very stressful.
This is why we feel overwhelmed and unmotivated.
Your phone alone is a massive “stressor”.
Driving and all that goes along with it – is another massive stressor.
We have more responsibilities and information coming at us, ALL day long. From first thing in the morning, all the way till bedtime.
We work more and longer hours and yet, we are sleeping LESS and less deeply. Thus, your nervous and adrenal system does NOT have time to recover properly and fully.
People don’t even realize this because we are just now “used” this. We just tolerate it.
So, What Does All This Mean?…
Most people have elevated levels of stress hormones.
Some have it so bad that it has just burnt out their adrenal glands and thus, they need stimulants such as caffeine and coffee just to feel “normal” and “get through the day”.
All of this now causes a massive hormonal imbalance and thus, more stress hormones, such as cortisol, end up causing a decrease in both total and free testosterone levels.
Remember, the opposite of testosterone is NOT the female hormone estrogen, but the stress hormone – cortisol!
Prolonged stress also causes negative changes in other key hormones such as insulin, Growth Hormones, IGF, Prolactin, Thyroid, and so forth.
All of these will cause NEGATIVE changes in how you look and feel. This means less muscle and more fat.
You’ll also have less motivation and drive, including in the bedroom, and thus, lowered libido, and erectile problems for guys.
The bottom line here is that you want to manage stress levels and NOT add to them. Taking pre-workout stimulants, energy drinks, and other products that have caffeine and similar compounds, ADDS to an already stressed body.
Yes, you’ll feel a short-term increase in performance, but the price will be a DECREASE in long-term results.
Remember, you want to lower stress levels – NOT add to them.
If any of today’s articles make sense to you… if you’re tired or you need caffeine products to just feel normal or to have a good workout… if you feel like your testosterone levels aren’t where they should be… if you’re not as motivated or happy or excited about life, then one potential cause is “overstress”.
It’s time you heal your body and I have two links for you.
One is about improving your testosterone and hormone levels, so you can build more muscle, lose fat and have a better sex drive.
The second is about improving your energy levels, memory, and cognition, WITHOUT the use of stimulants, such as caffeine. You’ll help repair adrenal fatigue.
Take a look at either one or both links, based on what you want and need.